PARENTING
11/18/2016 03:28 pm ET

The Lessons One Woman Learned From Her Sister With A Rare Disease

“Annie has a way of giving hope when we feel we need it most.”

In an inspiring post, one woman has shared the life lessons her younger sister has taught her in hopes that other people will learn them, too.

In a Facebook post from Nov. 10, Kelly Wieder wrote about what her 18-year-old sister Annie Allio has taught her. Allio has Batten disease, a fatal neurodegenerative disease that can cause seizures, blindness and loss of motor skills. In her post, Wieder wrote about how kind and selfless her sister is.

“If she has nothing materialistic to give you, she gives you a hug. She struggles to speak sometimes and she needs help walking the little bit that she does anymore,” she wrote. “She has a life expectancy of anywhere from months to a few years to live and she’s HAPPIER than anyone I know.”

It’s clear in Wieder’s touching post that she admires her sister’s persistence and positivity. She wrote that Allio, who is “up against everything,” taught her to keep pushing through no matter what.

“She takes the next scary, unstable step and reaches for help one more time while still BEING KIND TO EVERYONE AROUND HER,” Wieder wrote.

Wieder told The Huffington Post she wrote the post the day after the 2016 election. She felt motivated to share how her sister “faces fear and hardship each day” and reminds her to be positive. Frank Somerville, a news anchor in California, shared the post on his Facebook page where it got more than 7,000 reactions. Wieder said Allio knows about what she wrote about her and loves seeing the impact the post has made online.

“She is so excited to know how many people are inspired by her and she loves all the comments from people cheering her on and letting her know they pray for her,” Wieder wrote.

Four years ago, Weider and Allio lost their sister Catie to Batten disease when she was 22. Their mother, Kathy Allio, said Wieder’s message reflects what she and her family have been through. 

“I think her post is beautiful and incredibly poignant,” she told HuffPost. “I believe that it spoke volumes as to the complexity of what Kelly has grown up with ... two terminally ill sisters.”

Wieder said the feedback on her post has been “overwhelmingly positive,” though she’s not surprised considering her sister was involved. 

“Annie has a way of giving hope when we feel we need it most.” 

HuffPost

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